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FOSTER v. UNITED STATES

May 14, 1996

P. WESLEY FOSTER, JR., Plaintiff,
v.
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION, and DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, Defendants.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: RICHEY

 UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

 INTRODUCTION

 The plaintiff seeks to have the Court certify a number of questions for interlocutory appeal pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1292(b) and Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 54(b). The Court has set a trial schedule for the balance of this case with trial on the merits to begin on June 17, 1996 and other pretrial dates as set forth in the accompanying Order. A decision on the remaining claims, both legal and factual, by this Court prior to appeal of those issues which have been decided unfavorably to the plaintiff will advance the termination of this litigation and prevent a possible dual appeal and thus save judicial resources. Accordingly, because piecemeal appellate review of these issues would not materially advance the resolution of this case and because circumstances warrant a delay in the entry of final judgment, the Court shall deny the plaintiff's Motion.

 BACKGROUND

 On March 29, 1996, the Court denied the plaintiff's Motion for Summary Judgment with respect to the defendants' liability under the Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Act ("CERCLA") and the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act ("RCRA"). The Court also denied the defendants' Motions for Summary Judgment with respect to their own liability under the CERCLA for future response costs. However, the Court granted the defendants' Motions with respect to their liability for past response costs under the CERCLA, and their liability under the RCRA. In addition, the Court granted the defendants' Motions with respect to the plaintiff's liability as a present owner of the Site under the CERCLA. Accordingly, there remains for adjudication the issue of the defendants' potential liability under the CERCLA as past owners and/or operators of the Site.

 
(1) The grant of the defendants' cross-motions for summary judgment on the plaintiff's claim for recovery of past costs under CERCLA;
 
(2) The denial of the plaintiff's Motion for Partial Summary Judgment on the liability of each of the defendants;
 
(3) The grant of the defendants' Motion for Summary Judgment on the plaintiff's claims regarding petroleum substances found at the Site; and
 
(4) The grant of the defendants' Motions for Summary Judgment on the plaintiff's claims under the RCRA.

 Plaintiff's Motion at 1-2. Notwithstanding the pending trial schedule, the plaintiff seeks to have the Court certify each of these issues for an interlocutory appeal pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1292(b); the plaintiff seeks the entry of final judgment pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 54(b) on issues (1) and (4). The Court addresses each issue in turn and finds the plaintiff's arguments with respect to the foregoing without merit.

 DISCUSSION

 Under 28 U.S.C. § 1292(b), a litigant may appeal an interlocutory order. This section ...


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